Days Gone By - stories from the past

There is no other cemetery in the world like this Alabama Cemetery!

In Tuscumbia, Alabama there is an unusual cemetery devoted entirely to coon dogs. The cemetery never started out to be a coon dog cemetery.  It was only a burial spot for a favorite coon hunting dog named Troop. Key Underwood hunted with Troop for more than 15 years and when he died, Key wanted to bury the dog at the hunting camp where they had spent many happy days.coon dog cemetery

It was on Labor Day 1937 when Underwood buried his faithful coonhound at the hunting camp. Other hunters from the camp and around the area started doing the same thing with their favorite coon dogs when they died. Now there are more than 185 coon dogs from throughout the United States buried in this coon dog cemetery in Tuscumbia. It is now called the Key Underwood Coon Dog Memorial Graveyard.

Only certified coon dogs are buried there and there are strict rules about their burial so don’t ask to bury any other kind of dog.

The bond between a coon dog is strong as can be seen in this funeral for this special dogs

 

The cemetery is not limited to Alabama coon dogs. Coon dogs from around the world are buried there and some are famous. “Hunter’s Famous Amos – a hound that was named Ralston Purina’s Dog of the Year in 1984, is buried here as well as several World Champion coon dogs.”

Coon Dog from Indiana buried in the Cemetery

 

The Cemetery even has its own song written and sung by Travis Wammack

 Each year there is a celebration at the cemetery  on Labor Day in honor of Troop, the first coon hound buried there.

This is a video of the 75th anniversary

You can find the Coon Dog Cemetery 7 miles west of Tuscumbia, Alabama on U.S. Hwy 72. Turn left on Alabama Hwy 247, and travel approximately 12 miles. Then turn right, and follow the signs. The Friends of the Coon Dog Cemetery, Inc are the sole caretakers of the cemetery. We are the organization that all should contact for information etc. Colbert County Tourism is not the point of contact and does not have anything to do with the cemetery.
Email: [email protected]
Contact Janice M Williams, President of FCDC
256-412-5970

RIBBON OF LOVE: 2nd edition – A Novel of Colonial America  by Alabama author Donna R. Causey – based on ancestors of the Cottingham family of Bibb County, Alabama – Inspired by true events.

 

 

About Donna R Causey

Donna R. Causey, resident of Alabama, was a teacher in the public school system for twenty years. When she retired, Donna found time to focus on her lifetime passion for historical writing. She developed the websites www.alabamapioneers and www.daysgoneby.me All her books can be purchased at Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble. She has authored numerous genealogy books. RIBBON OF LOVE: A Novel Of Colonial America (TAPESTRY OF LOVE) is her first novel in the Tapestry of Love about her family where she uses actual characters, facts, dates and places to create a story about life as it might have happened in colonial Virginia. Faith and Courage: Tapestry of Love (Volume 2) is the second book and the third FreeHearts: A Novel of Colonial America (Book 3 in the Tapestry of Love Series) Discordance: The Cottinghams (Volume 1) is the continuation of the story. . For a complete list of books, visit Donna R Causey

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51 comments

  1. Regina Griggs Hammond

    Have visited and it was peaceful in the woods, such a befitting place for beloved animals put to rest. Some dog owners left their dogs collars laying on top of their graves. It made me cry, then I thought what a nice tribute to those animals.

  2. Moe Headrick

    Used to raise Blueticks back in my 20-30’s…had others, too….Black & Tans, Red Bones, Walkers….loved the Blueticks, best.

  3. Judy Larry Murray

    I thing this is the one that was on the movie sweet home Alabama. ( with Reese Witherspoon)..

    1. Alabama Pioneers

      The one seen in the movie was a recreation that was based off photographs of this one

  4. T. W. Pace is my real name

  5. Brenda Alexander Rogers

    Drove all over Freedom Hills; but, couldn’t find it.

    1. Carl Ernest Green

      I seem to pass the turn to the area of it when headed West on US 72, just before the Natchez Trace Parkway. It’s a peaceful place, and once a year they have a big time with food, and booths.

  6. Bruce Thomason

    I went by there many times in the 70’s. Interesting place.

  7. Theresa Hampton

    Unreal !! We went in our way to the rattlesnake saloon

  8. Barry Wiginton

    I was there just yesterday.

  9. Abby Campbell

    Wow, just another reason we are so special here in Alabama!!

  10. Johnny Gibson

    My wife and I went last year

  11. Jack Johnson

    What a special place!!!

  12. Jimmie Rhoden

    A good dog is loyal to his owner a good owner is loyal to his dog

  13. David W. Welch

    I was up there last year , an it was a Great Place !

  14. Patricia Johnson

    I went there about 4 yr ago with a school group on a field trip.

  15. Jane McCartha White

    My husband & I went there last year when our grandson was playing All-Star Baseball in Muscle Shoals.

  16. Connie Walker

    Been there. It’s a great place to visit.

  17. Sandra Harper

    We’ve been there and it’s so interesting! The Rattlesnake saloon is nearby and a must see! Alabama has so many interesting sites.

  18. Kym Mayfield West

    My dad carved both the statues there!

  19. Sheri Munro Pennington

    Haven’t been there in years.

  20. William Williamson

    There is a place in Jacksonville Alabama on the Hurricane mountain where a coon dog owner built a water cistern to collect water from the mountain. The story goes that his prized coon dog ran itself to death and no water on the mountain top. He constructed the concrete cistern as a memorial. Now ignorant people pollute it all the time.

  21. Ann Jones

    Tom Johnson, check it out!!

  22. Brent Hart

    Shirley, I have been to this cemetery. It’s amazing to see the amount of money these hunters spend on their dogs. It’s beautiful.

  23. Jeremy Gunter

  24. Dianne Ayers

    Have seen sign many times.

  25. Actually, the Coon Dog Cemetery is south of Cherokee, which is a few miles west of Tuscumbia. Been there any number of times, an inspirational place; quiet, and very isolated.

    1. Thank you for the information. I included it at the bottom of the story.

  26. Sheryl Biddle Moore

    Been there; head stones very ornate for the champions. Just a short ride to Helen Keller’s home.

  27. Wil Jackson

    Joseph Blackburn Erik Brown Michael Brown Marc McMaster

    1. Wil Jackson

      Oh yeah …. i just wanna go up there and look

    2. Marc McMaster

      Shit how you’re rigs are messed up

    3. Marc McMaster

      Crystal Horton you wanna go

    4. Crystal Horton

      How neat…may just have too 🙂

    5. Marc McMaster

      We need to me u Haven Rose Headley Wil Jackson

  28. Ronald Hughes

    Try searching Franklin County, AL. Just NE of Red Bay is also a famous Coon dog cemetery. World famous champions buried here.

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